Julie wrote her own story.
I am a 38 year old woman who was born with Cerebral Palsy (CP). I have lived independently since I was 21 years old. I have a small dog named Jess who was rescued by the RSPCA. She has a lovely nature and is my best friend and companion. Jess is great to have around when I fall. She will sit with me until someone comes. She is also good entertainment. When my carers cook my dinner, Jess starts barking at us to say "Well I'm here too. Where is my food?”
For the past 18 years I have worked as a Graphic Designer with a group called ‘Inprint’ within the Science Park Organisation, and I have also been the Editor of a monthly magazine. I submitted a poster for the 2004 Adelaide Fringe festival - I didn’t win but I was very proud of my effort and the poster is still hanging on my wall at home.
In my younger years I was involved in Riding for the Disabled and I used to play Sledge Hockey. I also graduated from a modelling course when I was 12. When I walked onto the stage on Graduation night everyone held their breath and waited to catch me if I fell. But I completed the walk and received a lot of applause.
Current Exercise Activities
I enjoy exercise and currently I do Snow Skiing at Mount Thebarton and attend Hydrotherapy every two weeks.
I have been on three overseas trips, travelling to Kenya, Tanzania, Zanzibar, America, Canada, Belgium, Germany and New Zealand. I would love to travel a lot more in the future. I went sky diving and white water rafting in New Zealand.
I have a lot of artistic pursuits. I have done glass painting and candle making, and attended theatre groups. Unfortunately many of these things I enjoyed closed or ended after a while, leaving me to pursue other options. I now do two different art classes - one with oils and an abstract class using acrylics. I have had a few of my paintings in exhibitions and have sold a couple of them.
I Never Give Up!
Sometimes my disability slows me, and gets me down; but I have many great friends and supporters who are always willing to assist me in my new adventures. I am a very determined person. My mum and grandpa taught me to be determined. My mum taught me to walk and talk. She taught me never to give up. If there is an obstacle in the way of what I want to do, I work out how to get around it, sometimes after talking with my parents and friends.
My Support Network
My family and friends have been a wonderful support. I decide what I want to do and they support me to do it. When I went overseas I decided where I wanted to go and they provided the support to enable me to get there. I have wonderful friends who also support me a lot. I would have to say having a support network has enabled me to do all the things I do. I will always be grateful to my caring family, carers and friends for the untiring support they have given me over the years. With their help I know I can enjoy many more of the experiences life has to offer.
Sharing and Persevering
The suggestion I would make to someone else living in a similar situation is to keep pushing forward and never give up. There are many times when I have wanted to give up, but by talking to family and friends I have been able to persevere and keep going.
© Julie Lamming 2012. Except as provided by the Copyright Act 1968, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the author.